Petrarch’s “Original” of the <i>Fragmenta</i> 1362-1558: from Boccaccio to Rovillio’s third printing


  • H. Wayne Storey Indiana University



This essay questions the use of the term original to refer to Petrarch’s partial holograph of the Fragmenta (Vaticano Latino 3195) by examining the essential scribal change of register, from “fair” to “service” copy, that the poet imposed upon the still unsewn quires. Especially for an author like Petrarch, keen upon revising minute details of his lyrics and upon authorizing an “edition” of his own work, a fair copy produced by a professional copyist under his supervision was, as we see in much of Latino 3195 and in professional copies of other works supervised by the poet, a key component of his “original.” Examining four integrated critical and material approaches to Petrarch’s work not only in the partial holograph but also in early codices and early printed editions, this study analyzes the utility of early fair copies in tracing the “original” of the Fragmenta.

Author Biography

H. Wayne Storey, Indiana University

Editor-in-Chief, Textual Cultures